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Jungheinrich Automated Systems

Automated Logic

Failing to invest in intralogistics systems is at odds with accepted business drivers, according to German MHE manufacturer Jungheinrich, which is continuing to innovate and invest heavily in this dynamic sector of industry.

reached the point where they can no longer put off investing in their systems and processes. The lack of investment in recent years means that, in many cases, productivity and effi ciency is not being maximised and, for many fi rms, operational costs remain higher than they need to be. “In short, failing to invest in up- dated intralogistics systems is at odds with accepted business drivers.”


2009, the market for automated handling equipment has not bounced back so readily. Industry statistics highlight that the mar- ket for automated materials handling projects – which include products such as stacker cranes, picking systems, mini loads etc – have remained static at best. However, Jungheinrich UK Ltd believes that this sector is set for a period of sus- tained growth, as Steve Richmond (pic- tured), director of Jungheinrich UK Ltd’s Systems & Projects Division, explains. “The fork lift truck market has performed


very positively in the past three years, and sales of very narrow aisle trucks have been buoyant too. Small- to medium-sized projects have also held up well. But the automated projects arena has been slow to recover. “But I believe that companies have now

hile UK sales of fork lift trucks have continued to recover following the sharp fall experienced in

The majority of the growth in the au- tomated handling sector will, Steve Richmond contends, come from mid- level solutions that can demonstrate a quick return on investment (ROI).

According to Steve Richmond, future interest in automation will, in part, be driven by a shift in the size and scope of modern systems. “Many users now employ partial au- tomation – hybrid systems that are part- automated and part-manual,” he says. “In the past, some companies shied away from automation because they felt that a move to an automated system would mean that every aspect of the operation would have to be automated,” he continues. “This is simply not the case. If designed correctly, semi- and fully-automated solu- tions can be fl exible and scalable to allow for future growth and investment strategies and that will prove very attractive.” 

“Semi- and fully-automated solutions can be fl exible and scalable to allow for future growth and investment strategies”

“Clients are looking for solutions that

offer signifi cant productivity and effi ciency gains and a rapid ROI,” he says. Steve Richmond accepts that companies such as Jungheinrich have an important role to play when it comes to creating awareness among end users of the opera- tional benefi ts that modern automated and semi-automated handling systems offer. “There can be a lack of innovative thinking among warehouse planners when it comes to adopting different solutions. Clients do not always know what products are available and what can be achieved. We do and it is up to us to demonstrate it,” he says. Part work: many users now employ partial automation Storage Handling Distribution August 2012 27

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